Hundreds of trucks have been strained at the Ak-Tilek border crossing point (BPC) on the Kyrgyz-Kazakh border, Fergana news agency reported yesterday, citing the Border Service of Kyrgyzstan’s State Committee for National Security (SCNS).

A queue of 500 cargo-carrying vehicles has reportedly formed at the Ak-Tilek border crossing as of morning of November 20.  

On November 19, 280 trucks proceeded from Kyrgyzstan to Kazakhstan via the Ak-Tilek border crossing, according to Fergana news agency.  

Kyrgyzstan’s Border Service was quoted as saying that accumulation of trucks at the border crossings is a seasonal phenomenon and related to the increase in the sport of agricultural goods from Kyrgyzstan. 

At the same time, trucks carrying animals and perishable products reportedly proceed via the crossing points out of turn.   

“It is to be noted that neither Kyrgyz Border Service not Kazakh Border Service imposeыrestrictions on the passage of trucks.  All border crossings along the Kyrgyz-Kazakh border are operating as normal,” Kyrgyz Border Service said, according to Fergana news agency. 

However, the border service reportedly later clarified that in connection with modernization of the unified system of registration of external migration, the passage via the Ak-Zhol crossing will temporarily closed for passage of vehicles and cargo on November 20, from 1:30 pm to 3:00 pm.  

Recall, since August 20, a queue of hundreds of cargo-carrying vehicles had formed at the Ak-Tilek border crossing, with another 100-plus line emerging at the Ken-Bulan border crossing in the days that followed.

Truckers at Ak-Tilek said Kazakh border officials were slowing the passage of vehicles to around six per day, while the usual pace is about 20 per hour.

Kazakh Deputy Prime Minister and Finance Minister Yerulan Zhamaubayev told journalists on August 23 that Kazakhstan's Committee for National Security had been conducting anti-narcotics operations on the country's shared border.

But many Kyrgyz felt Kazakhstan decided to punish them.

Beet farmers in Kazakhstan’s Zhambyl region in August complained about lack of water.  Beet farmers in the region were indeed without water -- irrigation water that they would otherwise have received from a reservoir in neighboring Kyrgyzstan.

The Kyrgyz Agriculture Ministry argued it has fulfilled all its obligations to its downstream neighbor but maintains that in a year of extended droughts and high summer temperatures, there simply isn't any extra water to share.

The Kirov water reservoir in its northwestern Talas region carried a fraction of last year's volume, the ministry said, and was only 3 percent of its capacity.

Satellite images of Kirov from this year and last year appeared to support that assertion, while farmers in northern Kyrgyzstan, too, have complained about a lack of water.